Recently posted public documents reveal that the moderate-income "band," which originally included only 15 of the building's 297 apartments, now has eleven more units, and the most expensive "band has eleven fewer units. This approximates a 50% rent cut.
535 Carlton has eight more two-bedroom units renting for $1,591 a month (total now 12) and three more three-bedroom units renting for $1,832 (total: 4). Combined with 90 low-income units, this means the building now has 116 units renting at 100% of Area Median Income (AMI) and below. (In 2016, 100% of AMI for a four-person household was $90,600; it rose to $95,400 in 2017.)
Swapping out more expensive units
This moderate-income boost was accomplished by swapping seven two-bedroom units (previously $3,223/month) and four three-bedroom units (previously $3,716/month) from middle-income Band 5, which retains 37 two-bedrooms and three three-bedrooms. Band 5 originally had 148 units and now has 137.
The difficulty in filling such middle-income units, with some 95 unclaimed after the housing lottery, sparked New York Times columnist Ginia Bellafante's scornful 11/19/17 column, At $3,700 a Month, ‘Affordable’ Apartments Go Begging.
|Graphic by Ben Keel for City Limits|
However, to qualify for the tax break, 535 Carlton must supply 116 units, in various sizes, renting below 120 percent of AMI, to meet the required 20 percent affordability in the 576-unit pairing.
So the delivery of eleven more moderate-income units translates into tax savings of an estimated additional $50 million over the life of the project.
The 11 units that were swapped were previously unoccupied, a spokesman confirmed. There were surely more than enough takers on the waitlist.